I love metadata - it is the secret of our art.  I'd even say it is the force
majure that brought me into information management.  But trying to define
it, or tell others exactly what it is, has confounded me time and again.
Fortunately, some journalists make a good habit of explaining the difficult
concepts, and none better than Stewart Alsop from Fortune. In this issue,
captured by PK, Alsop makes everyday sense of metadata and says, yes, that
metadata is king.

I hope you will excuse me for pointing out Peter K's excerpt, but it really
is too good to miss.



> -----Original Message-----
> From: Peter Kurilecz [SMTP:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Wednesday, 29 November 2000 21:30
> To:   [log in to unmask]
> Subject:      RAIN 11/29: Potpourri
> Fortune 11/27/00
> Without Metadata, Content is just bits
> by Stewart Alsop
> I know this may sound obscure but, dear reader, I simply must tell you
> about
> metadata! Metadata presents the biggest challenge the tech industry faces
> in
> delivering the ubiquitous, ever present, networked future. Whether it's
> the
> seamless integration of data into your cell phone, downloading digital
> music
> at home or in your car, or getting your bank and brokerage house to
> cooperate
> online, it doesn't work without metadata. In fact, if you understand the
> value of metadata, you'll know why Bertelsmann's offer to lend $50 million
> to
> Napster won't necessarily save Napster.
> Metadata is information about information. Let's say you have an MP3 file
> on
> your hard disk. The information in that file is the bits that represent
> the
> music in a way that allows the computer to play it back accurately. The
> metadata is the information associated with the file, information that you
> and the computer want to know: the name of the file, its size, its length,
> the name of the song, the genre the song belongs to, and so on.
> Peter A. Kurilecz CRM, CA
> Richmond, Va
> [log in to unmask]